Rare Egyptian amulet bearing ancient pharaoh’s name discovered in Jerusalem
Name of Thutmose III, one of most prominent pharaohs in Egypt’s New Kingdom, inscribed on 3,200-year-old relic discovered by girl, 12, at Temple Mount Sifting Project
Neshama Spielman, who recently participated in the Temple Mount Sifting Project – which allows volunteers to sort through tons of earth illegally discarded from Judaism’s Holiest site in 1999 – discovered the amulet bearing the name of a pharaoh.
That pharaoh turned out to be Thutmose III, of Egypt’s 18th Dynasty, who reigned from 1479 – 1425 BCE, the Ir David Foundation, which co-sponsors the project based in the capital’s Tzurim Valley National Park, announced on Tuesday.
“While I was sifting, I came across a piece of pottery that was different from others I had seen, and I immediately thought that maybe I had found something special,” said Spielman of the discovery near Mount Scopus.
“It’s amazing to find something thousands of years old from ancient Egypt all the way here in Jerusalem! Celebrating Passover this year is going to be extra meaningful to me.”
The project, co-founded by archaeologists Prof. Gabriel Barkay and Zachi Dvira in 2004 to reclaim, analyze and document the earth discarded by the Islamic Waqf, is conducted under the auspices of Bar-Ilan University, with the support of Ir David and the Israel Nature and Parks Authority.
According to Barkay, professor emeritus at the Hebrew University, Thutmose III was one of the most prominent pharaohs in Egypt’s New Kingdom.
“He is credited with establishing the Egyptian imperial province in Canaan, conducting 17 military campaigns to Canaan and Syria, and defeating a coalition of Canaanite kings at the city of Megiddo in 1457 BCE,” said Barkay.
“Thutmose III referred to himself as ‘the one who has subdued a thousand cities,’ and it is known that